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April 16, 2014 / 16 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Palestinian Arabs’

Terrorism Without “Occupation”: Some Lessons From The Early Arab Pogroms

Wednesday, May 10th, 2006

The Bash-Israel media and the Arab terrorist amen chorus have been repeating for so many years that Palestinian terrorism and barbarism are caused by Israeli “occupation” that few are still capable of examining that “theory” critically.
 
The simple fact is that Palestinian terrorism and atrocities against Jews began not only long before Israel “occupied” the West Bank and Gaza, but long before Israel was created. Examining those early waves of violence can shed enormous light on the Middle East conflict even today and help us understand its true nature.

There were waves of attacks against Jews in Palestine throughout the 1920′s – the Jewish population of Hebron was destroyed by Arab terrorists in 1929. Palestine at the time was part of the British Mandate. While a few hundred thousand Arabs lived in there in the 1930′s, it had never been an Arab Palestinian state, and in fact had not been under any form of Arab rule since the Dark Ages.

The worst anti-Jewish atrocities in Palestine were part of a wave of Arab pogroms lasting from 1936 to 1939 and dubbed the “Arab Revolt” by apologists for the terrorism. They were designed to stop immigration to the Land of Israel by Jewish refugees trying to flee a Europe that was coming under the growing shadow of Hitler. During the “Revolt,” between 415 and 463 Jews (depending on the source) were murdered by the Arab pogromists.

The pogroms were aimed at Jewish civilians and sometimes at British colonial forces. They escalated in September 1937, after the British Royal “Peel Commission” made its recommendations. That commission called for a tiny Jewish mini-state and a large Arab state, both to be carved out of Western Palestine. It also called for severe restrictions on further immigration to Palestine of Jewish refugees from Europe. But because it did not rule out Jewish sovereignty and Jewish immigration altogether, which were the minimal demands of the terrorists, the pogrom leaders ordered escalated violence.

At the time, Palestinian Arabs were led by an “Arab High Command” headed by the infamous Grand Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini. The mufti served as chief clergyman in Jerusalem with British approval, even though he had fought against the British in World War I.

Al-Husseini later went on to become Hitler’s ally and point man, assisting Hitler in recruiting Muslims for the German side in World War II.

On May 10, 1941 the mufti broadcast a fatwa (religious ruling) calling for a holy war against the British. It claimed the British had profaned the Al-Aksa mosque and were out to destroy Islam (an allegation reinvented against Israel by more recent Palestinian leaders). In 1943 the mufti was sent to Yugoslavia, where he organized the 13th Waffen SS division, which not only was responsible for the murder of about 90 percent of Bosnia’s Jews but also destroyed numerous Serbian churches and villages. In his memoirs, the mufti thanked Eichmann and praised him as “gallant and noble.”

Throughout this period the Jews did not “occupy” anything except their own personal property, exercising no sovereignty at all in the Land of Israel. The campaigns of Palestinian terrorism had nothing to do with occupation, because there was no Jewish occupation.

Apologists for the terrorists, like Hebrew University’s pro-Palestinian professor and propagandist Baruch Kimmerling, argue that the violence proves that a “Palestinian nationalism” was emerging in the late 1930′s. In fact, the term “Palestinian” referred at the time to Jews, not Arabs. Palestinian Arab leaders did not begin to demand the right to “self-determination” and statehood until after 1967. When the West Bank and Gaza were occupied by Egypt and Jordan, the Palestinian leadership had no complaints about any “alien occupation” and expressed no desire for self-determination.

Were there no voices of moderation and tolerance among Palestinian Arabs at the time? As a matter of fact, there were. And the story of what became of one of them can help us understand the entire Middle East conflict.

On May 4, a fascinating story related to that era was published for the first time by the dovish Israeli journalist (and filmmaker) Yehuda Litani in Yediot Aharonot, Israel’s leading daily. Litani is well known for

films sympathetic to the mundane problems of Palestinian Arabs.

Back when the mufti was beating the war drums and organizing mass murders of Jews, it seems that an article was published by a young Palestinian Arab intellectual, Araf al-Asli, age 27, denouncing the mufti, the pogroms, and the violence.

The article appeared in both Hebrew and Arabic leaflets. Titled “The History of the Jews and the Arabs,” its theme was that Jews and Arabs had cooperated in the past, especially during the era of cultural flowering in Muslim Spain. That cooperation had helped make Spain the most advanced civilization of its age, surpassing the rest of Europe in science, literature, and architecture. Indeed, Muslim Spain was the most tolerant regime in all of medieval Europe.

Al-Asli went on to denounce Arab leaders trying to organize violent assaults against Jews and trying to recruit support among Palestinian Arabs for the untrustworthy dictators of the Arab states. He called for cooperation and solidarity with the Jews. He warned the Arabs that if they chose the path of armed conflict with the Jews, rejecting the outstretched hand of the Zionists, the Arabs would lose.

In the midst of the anti-Jewish pogroms, al-Asli was proposing an immediate ceasefire, followed by an alliance with the Zionists that would produce prosperity for Jews and Arabs.

Soon after publication of the essay, terrorists commanded by the mufti kidnapped the dissident, interrogated him, and eventually walled him up inside a cave on Mount Scopus. Meanwhile, al-Asli’s father, a civil servant in Jordan, managed to persuade the mufti to let his son out of the cave. Afraid of antagonizing the Jordanian regime, the mufti allowed the battered son out, but banished him to Lebanon. There al-Asli found work waiting tables and teaching Hebrew to students at the American University of Beirut.

The story was buried for many years until relatives of al-Asli told it to Litani and he published it. The incident shows clearly why so few voices of moderation have ever been heard among the Palestinian Arabs.

The mufti died in 1974, but the al-Husseini family has continued to play a central role in Palestinian terrorism and extremism.

For those who think Middle East terrorism is attributable to Jews “mistreating” and “occupying” Palestinians, nothing can better remove the blinders than studying the 1936-39 period in Palestine.

Steven Plaut, a frequent contributor to The Jewish Press, is a professor at Haifa University. His book “The Scout” is available at Amazon.com. He can be contacted at Steveneplaut@yahoo.com.

Let’s Talk About Squatters And Usurpers

Wednesday, December 8th, 2004

So let me see if I have this straight. The anti-Zionists claim that the Jews have no right to the land of Israel because before Israel was re-created in 1948, it had been almost 1,900 years since the last time that the Jews exercised sovereignty over the Land of Israel. And the anti-Zionists claim it is absurd to argue that anyone still has rights to land that was last governed with sovereignty 1,900 years ago.

And on what basis do they argue that the Arabs have some legitimate claim to these same lands? On the basis of the claim that the Arabs last exercised sovereignty over that land 1,000 years ago.

You all with me? Claims that are 1,900 years old are inadmissible. Thousand-year-old claims trump them and are indisputable.

Now let us emphasize that even the thousand-year-old Arab claim is not the same thing as a claim on behalf of Palestinian Arabs. After all, the last time that Palestinian Arabs had sovereignty over the lands of “Palestine” was … never.

It is true that Arabs once exercised sovereignty over parts or all of historic Palestine. There were small Arab kingdoms in the south of “Palestine” already in late biblical days, and they were important military and political allies of the Jews, who exercised sovereignty back then in the Land of Israel. After the rise of Islam, historic Palestine was indeed part of a larger Arab kingdom or caliphate. But that ended in 1071, when Palestine came under the rule of the Suljuk Turks. That was the last time Palestine had an Arab ruler. After that, it was ruled by Ottomans, Mamluks, other Turks, Crusaders, British, and – briefly – French.

In any case, why does the fact that Palestine once belonged to a larger Arab empire make it any more “Arab” than the fact that it also was once part of larger Roman, Greek, Persian, Turkish, or British empires? Now it is true that historic Palestine probably once had a population majority who were Arabs, but today it has a population majority who are Jews. So if population majorities are what determine legitimacy of sovereignty, Israel is at least as legitimate as any other country.

So why exactly do the anti-Zionists claim that a thousand-year-old claim by Arabs who were never ruled by Palestinian Arabs has legitimacy, while a 1,900 year claim by Jews to the land should be rejected as absurd, even though the United Nations granted Israel sovereignty in 1947? The anti-Zionists say it is because the thousand-year-old Arab claim is more recent than the older Jewish claim. But if national claims to lands become more legitimate when they are more recent, then surely the most legitimate of all is that of the Jews of Israel to the lands of Israel, because it is, after all, the most recent.

The other claim by the anti-Zionists is that Jews have no rights to the lands of Israel (historic Palestine) because they moved there from some other places. Never mind that there was always a Jewish minority living in the land of Israel even when it was under the sovereignty of Romans, Greeks, Arabs, Crusaders, Turks or British. Does the fact that Jews moved to the land of Israel from other places disqualify them from exercising sovereignty there? The claim would be absurd enough even if we were to ignore that fact that most “Palestinian Arabs” also moved to Palestine from neighboring countries, starting in the late nineteenth century. But, more generally, does the fact that a people moves from one locality to another deprive it of its claims to legitimate sovereignty in its new abode? Does this fact necessitate the conclusion that they need to pack up and leave, as the anti-Zionists insist?

If it does, then it goes without saying that the Americans and Canadians must lead the way and show the Israelis the light, by returning all lands that they seized from the Indians and the Mexicans to their original owners and going back whence they came. For that matter, the Mexicans of Spanish ancestry also need to leave. The Anglo-Saxons, meaning the English, will be invited to return the British isles over to their rightful original Celtic and Druid owners, while they return to their own ancestral Saxon homeland in northern Germany and Denmark. The Danes of course will be asked to move aside, in fact to move back to their Norwegian and Swedish homelands, to make room for the returning Anglo-Saxons.

But that is just a beginning. The Spanish will be called upon to leave the Iberian peninsula they wrongfully occupy, and return it to the Celtiberians. Similarly the Portuguese occupiers will leave their lands and return them to the Lusitanians. The Magyars will go back where they came from and leave Hungary to its true owners. The Australians and New Zealanders obviously will have to end their occupations of lands that do not belong to them. The Thais will leave Thailand. The Bulgarians will return to their Volga homeland and abandon occupied Bulgaria. Anyone speaking Spanish will be expected to end his or her forced occupation of Latin America. It goes without saying that the French will lose almost all their lands to their rightful owners. The Turks will go back to Mongolia and leave Anatolia altogether, returning it to the Greeks. The Germans will go back to Gotland. The Italians will return the boot to the Etruscans and Greeks.

Ah, but that leaves the Arabs. First, all of northern Africa, from Mauritania to Egypt and Sudan, will have to be immediately abandoned by the illegal Arab occupiers and squatters, and returned to their lawful original Berber, Punic, Greek, and Vandal owners. Occupied Syria and Lebanon must be released at once from the cruel occupation of the Arabs imperialist aggressors. Iraq must be returned to the Assyrians and Chaldeans. Southern Arabia must be returned to the Abyssinians. The Arabs may return control of the central portion of the Arabian peninsula as their homeland. But not the oil fields.

Oh, and the Palestinian infiltrators, usurpers and squatters will of course have to return the lands they are illegally and wrongfully occupying, turning them over to their legal and rightful owners – which would, of course, be the Jews.

Steven Plaut is a professor at Haifa University. His book ‘The Scout’ is available at Amazon.com. He can be contacted at steven_plaut@yahoo.com.

Israel Needed Arafat

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

By the time you read this article, Arafat will have died, and many will say good riddance. I, for one, would have liked Arafat to remain alive. I would have liked him to suffer in constant pain for all the lives of Jews and his own people that he destroyed, but at the same time, I would have liked him to remain a Palestinian leader.

Where would Israel be without Arafat? Former Prime Minister Menachem Begin (z”l) began the giveaway of Israel to the Arabs of Egypt; Shimon Peres offered the Palestinian Arabs big chunks of Judea and Samaria; Rabin offered more; and even Netanyahu offered parts of Israel. Ehud Barak offered 95% of Judea and Samaria and Gaza. Now Sharon is now in charge of the big giveaway, but it is hard to give away land when there is no one willing to accept what the Israelis are giving away.

If not for Arafat’s intransigence and his unwillingness to compromise, there would be little left of Israel today. Arafat saved the land many times over by being intractable in refusing what the Israelis were offering.

Following Arafat’s death, Israel’s Liberal establishment will fall over itself to offer more and more parts of Israel to any weak Arab leader who arises. Once the deal is sealed, it will be practically impossible to go back and re-conquer. Rabin declared that if the Arabs were to use the rifles he gave them against Israel, Israel would take the rifles away. What nonsense! The rifles that were turned against the Jews stayed with the Palestinian Authority. In the same way, the anti-Israel and even the pro-Israel nations of the world will not let us go in and retake land after it is given away.

The terrorists will murder those who compromise and then they will be that much closer to their goal of taking over all of “Palestine”. As Arafat publicly declared hundreds of times, “Tel Aviv is Palestine; Jerusalem is Palestine; Haifa is Palestine; Beersheva is Palestine.”

As long as there was no partner, Israel, despite Sharon, remained mostly intact. Now that Arafat has gone, his successors may be bright enough to realize that if the Arabs feign peace, the Israelis will give away everything!

Most non-Zionist Israelis do not care. Jerusalem means little to them, and they will feel comfortable anywhere in the world that they might be forced to flee to. There are many Israelis who went to live in Germany, Poland, Hungary and Russia. There are Israelis who feel at home in Australia, France, Scandinavia, England and, of course, America. They all claim to be coming back to Israel “soon,” but who knows what will be left now after Arafat has died and his successors will not be as intransigent?

Not enough of those living in Israel really care, and I do not believe that a referendum will make any difference. Only Arafat’s inflexibility saved us. Let us pray that G-d continues to protect us.

(Comments may be sent to dov@gilor.com)

Arafat Will Save Us

Wednesday, November 19th, 2003

In an attempt to undermine the Israeli government, a group of failed Leftist politicians are
“negotiating” a peace with several Palestinian Arabs. Amram Mitznah, the ousted head of the Labor Party, and Avrum Burg who masquerades as a religious Jew but is willing to give away the Temple Mount, both follow the lead of that “brilliant” Oslo architect, Yussie Bailen, who was thrown out of the Knesset by his own party. This is the group of Israelis, whose
conceit in their own abilities knows no limits, who are blithely negotiating away the Jewish State to an avowed enemy.

As in the past, left wing Israelis are conducting private diplomacy against the interests of the State and only Arafat’s obstinacy and foolishness will save us. His negation of any agreement, no matter how beneficial to the Palestinian Arabs, is the only thing that stops self-hating Jews from giving these Arabs most of Israel’s homeland. The so-called “Geneva Initiative” concedes from the start of the negotiations 97% of Judea and Samaria, all of East Jerusalem and the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. All of this land will be given in return for another empty Arab promise almost identical with the Arab promises in the Oslo Accords. These self-proclaimed leaders who were unable to gain power via democratic means, hope to gain power by embarrassing Israel and the Jewish nation. They hope to force the anti-Semitic world powers to pressure Israel into making dangerous concessions, at no cost to the Arabs.

If Americans against America had carried out these negotiations, these traitors would have been sent to prison for their anti-government conceit. Unfortunately, Israel has no law against private anti-Israel diplomacy and these bumbling Leftist fanatics may yet achieve a tremendous anti-Israel victory for their Palestinian terrorist friends.

The really amazing aspect of these negotiations is the powerful pseudo religious faith that these
Leftist fanatics have. They firmly believe that the Palestinian Arab promises will be faithfully adhered to by the very people who have a perfect 100% record of breaking every one of their signed agreements and who publicly proclaim that their ultimate purpose is to sanitize all of “Palestine” of Jewish presence. In every phase of past negotiations, these same Arabs
have been granted “painful” concessions, yet have reneged on every promise they have made. They then renewed their old promises, received additional concessions, and again reneged on their promises. These deluded Israeli Leftists who have perfect faith in their own negotiating abilities, religiously believe that Arafat and the Palestinian Arab leaders will concede even a small portion of the land – that the Palestinian Arabs believe belongs completely to them
- to the Jews.

And what exactly will happen when the Arabs, as in the past, do not keep to their part of the
agreement? Look at the results of Rabin’s statement that “If they use the guns against us, we will take them back”. Well, do we want to take all of the guns away just because one PLO man kills one Israeli? What if two or three “disturbed” Arab individuals shoot five or 10 Israelis, will Israel punish all of the Palestinian Arabs? How about when 100 PLO people
shoot 1,000 Israelis? There are millions of Arabs; will we blame them all for such a small percentage of the people’s attempt to destroy the peace or will Israeli politicians sing that oft repeated refrain,” We will not allow these few Arab enemies of peace to destroy our
agreements”? Jews may be murdered but the refrain will continue to be sung.

What if the Palestinian Arabs do not arrest the Hamas activists? Will we blame all of the Arabs because a few hundred Hamas activists are not arrested? Do we want to be the cause of a Palestinian Arab civil war? Can we really expect brothers to arrest brothers? Can anything be done if they smuggle in illegal weapons? Don’t they need protection? Can
we do anything if their preachers preach murder and mayhem? Don’t we believe in freedom of speech?

Even if some Arabs carry out atrocities against Jews, didn’t a Jew murder Rabin? You can’t blame all Arabs for the few, can you? Maybe America can carpet bomb thousands of innocent Afghanistan communities when a few hundred Bin Laden troops are hiding there, but Israel cannot do the same against the “innocent” Palestinian Arabs.

What about education? Should Israel dictate to the Palestinian Arab parents what the Arab children should be taught about Israel? Will we go to war just because the Arab schools are honoring the “Suicide Murderers” by having texts that ask math questions like: “If there are eight Jews and two are murdered by honored martyrs, how many Jews are left to desecrate
our holy shrines?”? Will we invade Arab cities because school texts depict the Jew as someone to be murdered?

There are thousands of “trivial” events that add up to the hatred and murder that the Arabs believe is right and just. As long as there is no Arab leader who will stand up and say, “let us all stop using emotion and let’s talk sense and peace” there is no partner and no chance of negotiations. We have played this dangerous game in the past and have been badly hurt by the machinations of a few fanatical Leftist Israeli politicians. We must wait to make additional
concessions until at least one Palestinian Arab leader begins to arrest terrorists and stop the murders.

Thankfully, Arafat has condemned the negotiations and even some leaders of the Labor Party
have condemned their fellow party members for their undemocratic actions. That should be enough impetus for the UN and Europe to embrace this private anti-Israel agreement with open arms and to try to force Israel to make further concessions to Arafat. Pray that they fail! 

The Refugee Poll

Friday, August 15th, 2003

We were as surprised as everyone else by the poll by a Palestinian pollster that barely 10% of
Palestinians who had at some point lived within the “green line” - or had parents who did - had any desire to return. But as welcome as that news is we urge caution ahead as to how to treat the news.

For one thing, there may now be a tendency to suggest that agreeing to a so-called “right of
return” should not be a point of great contention with the Palestinian Arabs because there would be little practical consequence. To the contrary. Agreeing to a “right of return” would open the floodgates.

And on a different level, it is critical to make the point that the poll is irrelevant. What
constitutes the land of Israel is not a function of what Palestinian Arabs may or may not want.
Israel is what it is.

The Jayson Blair Affair: A Perspective

Friday, June 13th, 2003

It now appears that The Times is finally ‘fessing up to the most outrageous abuses by one of its reporters and is conducting an investigation into the full scope of Jayson Blair’s misleading of its readers. From what is already known, for a period of four years, Blair fabricated news stories. But what is intriguing is that some higher-ups at The Times apparently were aware of Blair’s wrongdoing, but for reasons not yet clear – he was not discharged. Some are suggesting that notions of “affirmative action” (Blair is African-American), were in play in Blair’s being hired and not let go.

It has long seemed to us that there is a culture at The Times that tolerates lies, inaccuracies and the coloration or discoloration of news, in order to further its own agendas. And we suspect that social engineering considerations of racial “diversity” did indeed result in an institutional reluctance to come down hard on an employee who was regularly deceiving its readers.

While The Times is at it, we suggest that an investigation of its coverage of the Middle East is also in order. We believe there ought to be an inquiry into the many palpable untruths that have been published about Israel’s confrontation with the Palestinian Arabs.

A good place to start would be the partisan reportage of Deborah Sontag. For many months, this relatively inexperienced young woman’s articles appeared on the front page and other prominent places in The Times. Her reporting was undisguisedly pro-Palestinian to the point that her columns triggered boycotts of the newspaper. Unlike Blair, however, she was quietly reassigned. Perhaps things went too far for The Times even though Ms. Sontag reported what The Times brass wanted to hear.

The Blair Affair vindicates at long last what we and others have been saying for years: The Times logo, “All The News That Fit To Print,” should really be replaced by “We
Print All The News That Fits.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/editorial/the-jayson-blair-affair-a-perspective/2003/06/13/

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